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BOARD ACTION: IEDA Board Approves Projects From 7 established and 3 Startup Companies

March 19, 2021

For more information contact:
Ms. Kanan Kappelman, 515.348.6248

IEDA Board approves projects from seven established and three startup companies in Iowa

March 19, 2021 (DES MOINES, IA) –  Today, the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) Board approved awards for seven established companies, which will assist in the creation of 179 jobs and result in almost $105 million in new capital investment for the state. These projects are located in Burlington, Cascade, Iowa City, Johnston, Nevada, Rock Valley and West Des Moines. The board also approved innovation funding in support of three startups located in Carroll, Cedar Rapids and Iowa City.

First Capitol Baking Company to purchase building in Burlington
A subsidiary of East Baking Company, the single largest supplier to the federal prison system, First Capitol Baking manufactures bakery items. The company plans to acquire a building in Burlington and purchase new equipment and a solar roof to minimize the carbon footprint. The project represents a capital investment of $2.25 million and is expected to create 20 jobs incented at a qualifying wage of $21.61. The board awarded the project tax benefits through the Targeted Jobs Withholding program.

Centro to increase footprint in Iowa with building acquisition in Cascade
A plastic custom rotational molder that spans three countries and ten locations, Centro makes products for OEMs (original equipment manufacturers), which are used in agriculture, construction, and lawn and garden industries. The company plans to acquire a building in Cascade, a new and fourth location in Iowa. Representing a capital investment of just over $2.5 million, the project was awarded tax benefits through the High Quality Jobs (HQJ) program. It is expected to create 24 jobs, of which 16 are incented at a qualifying wage of $19.41.

Rantizo to expand in Iowa City
Rantizo is an Iowa City-based agtech company that uses drones to deliver ag inputs in-field precisely when they are needed, where they are needed. The platform integrates with field imagery data to prescribe and precisely deliver liquid and dry solutions using targeted drone-based agricultural spraying. Rantizo is the only company approved for drone-based agricultural spraying in multiple states and recently became the first company approved for nationwide swarming for spraying as well. The company plans to expand their size with a new location that will provide space for additional testing and research and development. The board awarded this $485,000 capital investment project tax benefits through HQJ. It is expected to create six jobs incented at a qualifying wage of $27.05.

Underground Magnetics INC. to build in Johnston
Underground Magnetics designs, markets and sells locators for horizontal directional drilling. It sells to both dealers and directly to end users, which are directional drilling companies that use the locator to install infrastructure. The company plans on constructing office and warehouse space in Johnston with Blue Tree, a holding company. The project represents a $7.2 million capital investment and is expected to create five jobs, of which four are incented at a qualifying wage of $26.57. The board awarded the project tax benefits through HQJ.

VERBIO Nevada to expand company
VERBIO Nevada is a biorefinery owned by VERBIO North America, a subsidiary of VERBIO Vereinigte BioEnergie AG, a major German producer of ethanol, biodiesel and renewable natural gas. The company plans to purchase equipment to integrate ethanol production alongside the renewable gas production within the existing facility, which reduces the carbon footprint and enhances its position within low carbon fuel standard markets. The project represents an $80 million capital investment. It is also expected to create 48 jobs, of which 33 are incented at a qualifying wage of $27.07. The board awarded the project tax benefits through HQJ.

Ironwood 53 to expand operations in Sioux County
Originating as Post Equipment Company (PEC) selling agricultural equipment, the company expanded to create Ironwood 53 as a manufacturing company. Ironwood 53 manufactures all parts for PEC, as well as auger flighting for agriculture and earth boring for other vendors. It also recently expanded to set up 25 small feed box dealers across the country and to manufacture and export a large vertical mixer. To handle product growth and increase in demand, the company plans to build a new facility adjacent to its current location in Sioux County. The project was awarded tax benefits through HQJ. It is expected to create 16 jobs incented at a qualifying wage of $22.04 and represents a capital investment of just over $2.5 million.

Innovative Injection Technologies to expand capacity in West Des Moines
Headquartered in West Des Moines, Innovative Injection Technologies manufactures custom plastic injection molded components for the agricultural, industrial, automotive and recreational markets. It specializes in complex, highly engineered and cosmetic plastic parts. The company plans to construct additional manufacturing capacity to its current warehouse location. The project is expected to create 60 jobs, of which 12 are incented at a qualifying wage of $26.67. The board awarded this $10 million capital investment tax benefits through HQJ.

Awards made to three startups

Classroom Clinic in Carroll offers school-based telehealth services to rural school districts. It offers an innovative solution for rural mental health services, which in turn could improve academic achievement, higher graduation rates and advancement to postsecondary education. The platform allows telehealth providers to effectively connect with schools, students and families to deliver the care they need. The company was awarded a $25,000 Proof of Commercial Relevance (POCR) loan for market analysis and IP development and evaluation.

Deetz, a tech startup based in Cedar Rapids, shows people what is happening around town in real time. The interface features an interactive map where users can discover daily specials, events, sales, pick-up games and more. Deetz allows small businesses to connect with the surrounding community every day and allows residents to truly engage locally and be rewarded for doing so. The company was awarded a $100,000 Demonstration Fund loan for market planning/entry activities, key personnel and equipment.

Iowa City-based FBB Biomed is a biotech company that develops intellectual property (IP) to measure and control ribonucleic acid (RNA) associated with disease severity. The company licenses its IP to life sciences companies for use in diagnostics and therapeutics development. The company was awarded a $25,000 POCR loan to expand its IP portfolio.

Award recommendations for these funds are made by the Technology Commercialization Committee to the IEDA Board for approval.

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Download a spreadsheet with today's awards.

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